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Netezza launches new data warehouse appliance family

Netezza on Monday plans to launch its latest data warehousing appliance, dubbed TwinFin. The appliance, the first in a family of them, promises to scale to a petabyte of data at a lower price point.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor on

Netezza on Monday plans to launch its latest data warehousing appliance, dubbed TwinFin. The appliance, the first in a family of them, promises to scale to a petabyte of data at a lower price point.

TwinFin will be priced at less than $20,000 per terabyte. The appliance features Netezza software running on standard blade server components. Database accelerator cards will also be integrated. The TwinFin family will include entry-level, high capacity and memory-intensive systems.

There is some debate over whether Netezza is changing its hardware architecture. Monash Research writes that Netezza is substantially changing its hardware architecture:

Netezza has now decided that conventional Intel-based boards are a better companion to the FPGAs than its currently-used PowerPC chips. Obvious implications of Netezza’s move to Intel CPUs include:

  • Pretty much any kind of software that runs on a data warehouse appliance can be built on or ported to Netezza, if it’s not there already.
  • In some cases, analytic performance will be greatly improved (Netezza says 100X with a straight face, although that’s far from being an across-the-board claim).

The future roadmap will include software enhancements and better price for performance ratios.

Netezza product management and marketing chief Phil Francisco replies to Monash:

I think a more appropriate viewpoint would be that it's “the same architecture with a new physical implementation”. That is, the concept of data streaming from disk through the system is just as important now as it ever was.

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